“Before Steve came back, sales executives were gutting Apple worse than the Capital One plunderers and rewarding themselves handsomely. (While Michael Spindler was looking to sell out.) None of the sales executives survived when Steve returned, and sales executives were rendered much less powerful. As bizarre as it seems, the sales organization can no longer even do marketing,” John Martellaro writes for The Mac Observer.
“These days, Apple has about $10B in the bank. That’s the result of years and years of rolling the profits into paying off debt and saving for a rainy day. Excellent. That $10B earns a lot of interest. But one analyst asked a few years ago whether Apple was simply running a credit union. The implication is that that much money either needs to be paid in dividends, which Apple won’t do, or be put to good work,” Martellaro writes.
Martellaro writes, “No one knows what Apple has in mind for that kind of money. My theory has been that Apple’s board of directors has been accumulating cash for a seriously large merger at the appropriate time. For a while, some thought it was Disney. It’ll be something much bigger than a mere $500M for a new campus. Or $50M for a new data center. No, I mean something so big, it’ll change the face of computing in America.”
“Apple appears to be transitioning to a much more consumer electronics focus. Back in the days, pre-iPod, when Apple was in its $6B/year doldrums, it was possible to put up barriers, remain a little arrogant (in order to keep the religious fervor alive), create a fever of endless product surprises, and remain distant from its customers. But as the Cluetrain Manifesto points out, companies that put up barriers, lock themselves behind walls, and refuse to actually talk with their customers get into trouble very quickly,” Martellaro writes.
Martellaro writes, “Apple realized that if they were going to become a consumer electronics company, they needed to have a store front presence on Main Street, USA. They’ve solved a major part of this ‘Castle and Moat’ complex with the Genius Bar at more than 150 retail sites, well placed with respect to population centers in the U.S. Even so, it’s interesting that the people who work in the Apple stores are a different kind of Apple employee, badged differently, and do not have a whole lot of authority. In time, that will have to change.”
Martellaro writes, “Apple is a mature company now, both technically and financially. The key to understanding how Apple is going to make this transition — from a computer company that has a popular electronic gadget, the iPod — into a company that has a portfolio of popular and useful electronic devices for the 21st century will be to watch where the money goes, up and down the organization. And with that money, authority and responsibility.”
Full article with much more here.
MacDailyNews Take: Buy Adobe. Clean out the dreck. Discontinue Windows versions of Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, InDesign, Premiere, etc.
Hey, it’s just an idea.
How long must we wait for Adobe to produce Universal applications for Apple’s Intel-powered Macs? – August 21, 2006
Cost of Apple’s second 50-acre Cupertino campus could top $500 million – April 25, 2006
Video: Steve Jobs meets Cupertino City Council – April 22, 2006
Transcript: Apple CEO Steve Jobs addresses the Cupertino City Council – April 20, 2006
Apple CEO Steve Jobs plans new 50-acre campus in California – April 19, 2006
Should Apple buy Adobe as leverage against Microsoft? – December 16, 2005
Adobe prefers (and promotes) PCs over Macs – March 24, 2003